My immune system is still playing am-I-amn't-I with me. I've been fine for several days now but it had me all full of cough this morning and feeling really unnaturally hot for a bit. That's gone again now. It teases me.
I bought some new glasses when I was going through a phase back in the autumn. That was when I discovered the concept of coloured overlays and lenses. I used the overlays for a while but I've stopped now and I don't think I'm any worse without them. But I had vague intentions of getting coloured lenses, so I bought some cheap glasses from the internet. And it would be foolish to spend that amount of money on getting them coloured, especially when I don't think I need them now, so they've gone into circulation as normal glasses. I didn't bother with the anti-reflection coating, all it seems to do is attract fingerprints but... actually, I've had it for so long that I'm struggling with these ones because they do reflect things. And they're not fitted to my face. I have quite a small head and glasses tend to be too big. That's why black-framed ones, even relatively delicate ones, always look ludicrous on me. And it's why they all have to have their arms bent in peculiar ways, to try and keep them on my ears. They've been slipping off all weekend and it's driving me crazy.
I have taken advice and am watching Boardwalk Empire. Can't put my finger on why but I'm quite enjoying it. Only two episodes in but I've got four sitting waiting to be watched later. Generally, if I'm not in a series at the beginning I don't bother, it's too much effort and commitment and just takes too much time to catch up (see my unwatched Battlestar Galactica boxset) but this is only twelve episodes. I'm still very much having trouble keeping who's who straight - I mix up Nucky and Jimmy occasionally at the moment and there's still a lot of people I haven't learnt to recognise yet. Hopefully I'll get there.
As well as that, I've finally picked up a book that I'm really enjoying - oh, I can see its faults, both in story and in style, but it's fun and that's all that's important, frankly. Black Lung Captain by Chris Wooding. I'm not going to pretend that it's fine literature. But stories are stories.
Speaking of which, I've spent the last ten days feeling vaguely that April would be a great time to knuckle down on the books I'm trying to write. The Sequel just isn't as much fun as the original Big Book Project. I don't know if that's because I've got something of a plot laid out, whereas the original was total "throw everything I can dream of in there and we'll sort it out later!". I don't know if it's because I'm trying to shoehorn in a couple of new characters who just aren't gelling or if it's suffering from lack of Nat but it's a pig to write. I love Alex and Joey. I love this brotherly/motherly relationship they seem to have slipped into. They're poppets. I guess the real problem is that Joey is coming across as a nerd who'd rather be on his computer and neither of them seems particularly good at the secret agent bit. Arrggh. Boys!
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I've just tried to watch the first episode of this new Camelot thing and... sort of stopped after not very long.
When I was about twelve, I bought The Once and Future King. I had acquired some gift vouchers - no idea why but I vaguely recall them being a prize of some kind. At the time, it seemed like a massive and also massively expensive book and I ploughed on through and I fell head over heels in love with the entire world. If I had to pick one book that changed my life, that would be it. Technically it's five books but let's not argue, especially as no one's actually ever going to ask me that question.
( How I love the Once and Future King )
Hello. We knew I'd be back pretty soon. I've managed a few quiet days but let's not go into that. I enjoy wittering on here and it's silly to deprive myself of the release for no particular reason.
Since I last wittered, I think I've been snowboarding twice and got on pretty well both times. Back at the stage I was at last July but marginally less terrified. Not bad considering I pretty much abandoned it for the best part of six months. The instructors (who've had their hands full with kids on half term) have been encouraging and managing to keep half an eye on me, which is amazing considering I don't even know them. I like the snowboarders more and more all the time.
Today I've been shopping. See?
Oww...poor little lactose-intolerant tummy has sent me home for lunch half an hour early, not that I'm going to be eating much. From what very little reading I've done on the subject, humans are born with an enzyme to digest milk and as they grow up and cease to live on milk, their production of this enzyme slows down, so a degree of lactose-intolerance is the default for most people, even if they don't realise it.
For someone who lives on bread and cheese, this can be inconvenient. No, day to day I'm fine. It's only if I overload my system with, say, a colossal mound of cheese beside a bowl of pasta or some ice cream (particularly sensitive to ice cream, fairly small amounts set it off) or some milk. I like chocolate milk. Generally, if I keep it to a reasonably small amount, no more than half a cup at a time, I'm ok. However, if I were to eat a bowl of ice cream, a cheese panini and half a cup of milk all within twenty-four hours... well, today's evidence suggests I can't cope with that.
I'm eating a couple of slices of fairly plain toast and when my lunch hour is over, I'll go back to work and by hometime, I'll have forgotten it ever happened. It's generally over pretty quickly. Half an hour ago I was sitting at my desk trying not to whimper out loud with stomach cramps and now I'm fine. I had a comedy last night and two more next week and I shall tell you about those three all together when I've seen the last one.
Book 3 of the Looking Glass Wars arrived yesterday. I'll have to reread the first two before I touch it. And also finish Best Served Cold. And I'm still holding out hope that Republic of Thieves is published next Thursday. Waterstones says it is and I've preordered it but I'm so used to being let down by this book that I won't be surprised if it isn't.
My reading list looks something like this at the moment:
Finish Best Served Cold
Republic of Thieves
The Looking Glass Wars
The toaster still smells suspiciously like burnt toast. Must just go and check it's ok.
I am using my bored-time at work to do some writing on The Sequel. I told myself 100,00 words by end of March. That is looming horrifyingly close considering I only have about 35,000 words.
4.22pm - Still feeling a bit icky. Don't know why, over-drinking of milk doesn't usually hang around this long. It's probably a combination of too much milk and not enough sleep. Hot and headachey and could just curl up and go to sleep.
I'm feeling a little better now. Back in my own bed (my parents' bed for some reason is much better for anti-pain naps), I've had some painkillers, I've watched Primeval and Russell Howard's Good News. Now I'm just plain tired. I went out with the girls from work yesterday, to a murder mystery evening. We got back late, my mind had been set going far too fast and it was reluctant to slow down and it also decided it needed to see the Graham Norton Show before I could sleep. I put the computer down and fidgeted for an hour and hovered on the edge of sleep and then gave up, hoisted the laptop back up. Fine, brain. You win.
And then, having not got to sleep until nearly 3am, my brain decided to wake me up by 8. Properly awake. Not the sort of half-awake that compels me to push back the heavy duvet so as to be able to get at the radiator better at 6am but properly now-I'm-awake-I-should-get-up sort of awake. I didn't get up. I listened to the radio on my phone instead, having had to first go downstairs to fetch the thing. Then I got dragged to town, dragged to the bank to get Dad's name taken off my bank account and then had to remain until Sister had finished shopping. I bought The Heroes by Joe Abercrombie and I'm looking forward to finishing Best Served Cold.
( Ireland trip planning )
I'm tired. I missed a lot of sleep last night and although I had a nap this afternoon, I've still several hours to catch up on. But first, Primeval.
( Musings on Primeval series four. )
By the way - I hugely recommend Joe Abercrombie. I devoured his First Law trilogy a couple of years ago and grabbed Best Served Cold as soon as it was published. For the last two years, I've picked it up, read the first chapter and abandoned it again fairly regularly but I'm finally back in the right state of mind to enjoy books again and, damn, I'm enjoying this one. I see that I will be getting my hands on The Heroes at the weekend. Joe Abercrombie and Scott Lynch. Both great. Any suggestions along similar lines?
Other books I've enjoyed:
All Fun & Games Until Somebody Loses An Eye - Christopher Brookmyre
The Vesuvius Club - Mark Gatiss
Jasper Fforde in general
UnLunDun - China Mieville
Marianne Curley in general
The Looking Glass Wars - Frank Beddor
But I did my reading in the bath (best place for it, it seems. Three baths to get through Deathly Hallows. Long baths...) and came out really itchy. I literally scratched my skin raw. My arms and stomach were worst - all red and sore-looking. A good rinse off and then a proper wash seemed to help and lotion definitely did. I don't generally bother with lotion - it feels all heavy and oily and yucky but I thought it might be a good idea today and now everything feels unnaturally but delightfully soft and most importantly, non-itchy. Matey bubble bath (what? You don't have to be six to use it! My dad is nearly sixty and he loves it!) has never caused me a problem before and I rinsed the bath before I got in so I can't imagine there were any lingering cleaning chemicals in there. I came out wearing a towel and my glasses, to run straight into Dad coming up the stairs. He took one look at me and had hysterics. I mean the sort of hysterics where you not only can't talk but you can also hardly breathe and then although she had no idea what was so funny, Mum started laughing at him laughing and I just stood there, When he eventually sort of recovered the power of speech he managed to communicate that what was so hilarious was that my glasses were so steamed up when I came out of the bathroom that they were completely opaque, which was what I suspected.
Also been daydreaming about Alex's days in basic training, which is great fun, although I have no intention of actually writing any of it down properly.